Tuesday, May 29, 2007


It's time for yet another rant - this time about the NHS or the Minister for Health or whatever skinflint is in charge of the NHS purse strings. I am slowly coming to the conclusion with child number three that it is more than scandalous that there is a cheap, effective vaccine for chicken pox that from my trawling of the internet is the norm in the USA but we are still putting our precious little people through this unnecessary nightmare.
When Marcel and Charlotte got chicken pox back in 2002, they both got really mild doses. That is to say they had a couple of dozen spots and a temperature for 1 day. Charlotte being an exceptional child decided to catch the uncatchable a second time in February 2005 causing me untold problems: blood tests etc as it is dangerous to pregnant women who haven't had it and of course I was 5 weeks pregnant with Léon and no one could remember me having had it - more hassles. Again though Charlotte had a mild dose - perhaps as few as 10 spots and no temperature, so I wasn't overly concerned from a health point of view - simply from the hassle point of view that when you only get 5 weeks holiday a year you really don't want to be taking 10 days off each time a kid gets chicken pox.
Léon though, if you have been following my poxy saga, has changed my view of the need for vaccination. Léon got one of the worst doses of chicken pox I have ever seen. (Maybe because he is so young, I am not sure). He was unwell and had to be off nursery 4 May through 15 May. He had a temperature, he couldn't sleep, he couldn't eat, he was up every hour for days and nights on end. I had the hassle value of arranging places and people to look after him, the hassle of working from home 3 days making sure I fitted in my 4.5 hours of work sometimes by working long after everyone was asleep in bed. I was stressed, tired, no exhausted and I was also worried sick about a really ill wee man. After only one day back at nursery, he started vomiting profusely and was sent home again. I too was on the verge of illness by now after 2 weeks of this level of stress. Two days after the vomiting started he was burning up and the emergency GP appointment diagnosed an ear infection in each ear and a chest infection all caused by the fall out from the chicken pox and what it had done to his immune system. He got antibiotics and was finally starting to eat and smile again by last Tuesday. Of course when the antibiotics finished on Thursday night the inevitable happened - Friday he was ok, by Saturday his nose was running and today he was roasting, not eating, pointing at his ears and wailing. A 24 hour trip to the hospital diagnosed 2 ear infections and a throat infection - all further complications of the bloody pox. How long is this wee man going to have to suffer - all for a vaccine that would probably have cost tax payers 50p? He's been ill for the best part of a month, can hardly stand, I am shelling out £350 for a nursery place he is never well enough to attend and I am stressed out my mind trying to work at 3am so I don't lose my job.
It's truly wonderful our NHS - isn't it?

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